On Loving Our Enemies: Essays in Moral Psychology

ISBN : 9780199862986

Jerome Neu
272 Pages
165 x 241 mm
Pub date
Jun 2012
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This book explores moral questions that go beyond the issues commonly considered in the ethics of action. Can there be an ethics of emotion or an ethics of fantasy? If what we feel and what we think are beyond the direct control of our will, does it make sense to set norms or standards for us to aim at in those spheres, or does anything go? What are the limits of our freedom? And what are the sources of our standards? Are they themselves a matter of arbitrary feeling or do there exist authorities we might turn to in order to find our way? We are told that authenticity is valuable, that we must be true to ourselves. Is the self and what it wants the ultimate source of value? (Even the nastier parts of our natures?) How are we to determine which aspects of ourselves are essential and demand and deserve expression? Are there competing and conflicting sources of value? The claims of Plato, Freud, Sartre and other important thinkers are considered, criticized, and brought into play in the service of greater self-understanding and understanding of what matters and what is up to us. Throughout, the insights and approaches of law, psychoanalysis, anthropology, and other disciplines in addition to philosophy are put to use. The essays included in this collection draw on and develop the author's earlier work on emotions and moral identity in the Spinozist hope that greater self-understanding, because of the special features of reflexive-knowledge, can lead to greater freedom, making us better able to live with others and with ourselves. "Philosophy of emotion and Freudian theory are now thriving areas of philosophy, but they were not when Neu began; he was instrumental in making them so. His essays on emotion, particularly the classic papers on jealousy, helped pave the way for the rehabilitation of emotion that has transformed moral philosophy. There is every reason to believe, then, that the present collection will stand as a significant contribution to scholarship on Freud, Emotion, and Morality." - John Doris, Philosophy, Washington University in St. Louis "Jerome Neu is one of the most insightful contemporary writers on the philosophy of emotions. His first essay collection, A Tear is an Intellectual Thing, was a major contribution to our thinking about the nature of emotions (in general and with respect to particular emotions) and their important implications in the actual texture of our moral lives. This essay collection is a worthy successor and provides a rich analysis of particular emotions (love, for example), an exploration of the relationship between emotions and authenticity and freedom, enlightening discussions of Freud and his critics, and the role of emotions in the law." - Jeffrie G. Murphy, Law, Philosophy, and Religious Studies, Arizona State University


Preface and Acknowledgments
1. On Loving Our Enemies: The Ethics of Emotion
2. The Ethics of Fantasy
3. Authenticity and the Examined Life
4. Divided Minds: Sartre's "Bad Faith" Critique of Freud
5. Encyclopedia Entries on Freud:
a. Freud and Ethics
b. Freud and Perversions
c. Freud and Psychoanalysis
6. Genetic Explanation in Totem and Taboo
7. Descartes' Dreams
8. Minds on Trial
9. More Speech, Better Speech as the Best Defense
10. Euthyphro, the Legal Realists, and the Dilemma of Authority
11. Plato's Analogy of State and Individual:
The Republic and the Organic Theory of the State
12. Short Reviews:
a. Psychoanalysis and Science: Neu on Grunbaum on Popper on Freud
b. Cavell's The Psychoanalytic Mind
c. Hampshire's Innocence and Experience
d. Masson's Against Therapy
e. Solomon's Not Passion's Slave
13. Unger's Knowledge and Politics
14. Reply to My Critics

About the author: 

Jerome Neu is Professor of Humanities, University of Califonia, Santa Cruz; author of several books including A Tear is an Intellectual Thing and Sticks and Stones: The Philosophy of Insults.

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